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Dredging For Diamonds

Just coming up from another long dive suction dredging for diamonds. The hard work of wrestling around a 10" suction hose gets you in amazing shape very quickly. I love diving and the challenges it brings to keep the production coming.

~ Rob Towner

Venezuela Kimberlite  Diamond

What is alluvial mining?

Today, diamonds are mined in about 25 countries, on every continent but Europe and Antarctica (AMNH, 2006). Although most diamond mining is accomplished by large companies, in many developing countries, diamonds and other minerals are extracted by small- scale miners working in the informal sector. These small-scale miners often use simple artisanal mining techniques in alluvial deposits.

The process of alluvial diamond mining involves digging and sifting through mud, sand and gravel using shovels, sieves, or even bare hands. Typically, diamonds come from geologic rock formations called Kimberlites. Kimberlite rock formations that contain diamonds are eroded over time by rivers and streams and can deposit diamonds in the sediments carried by those streams farther downstream from the original source rocks. These deposits are called alluvial diamond deposits. The locations of these alluvial diamond deposits are controlled by the surrounding topography, drainage patterns, and the location of the Kimberlites themselves. Alluvial deposits are often mined and exploited by small-scale miners using artisanal mining technique.
(USGS - read entire article)



Huge diamond field boasting ‘trillions of carats’ discovered in Russian meteorite crater

A gigantic deposit of industrial diamonds found in a huge Siberian meteorite crater could revolutionize industry, Russian scientists say.

The Siberian branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences said the Popigai crater in eastern Siberia contains “many trillions of carats” of so-called “impact diamonds” — good for technological purposes, not for jewelry, and far exceeding the currently known global deposits of conventional diamonds.

Nikolai Pokhilenko, the head of the Geological and Mineralogical Institute in Novosibirsk, told RIA Novosti news agency Monday that the diamonds include other molecular forms of carbon. They could be twice as hard as conventional diamonds and therefore have superlative industrial qualities.
(NY Daily News - read entire article)


Diamond-Based Materials Brighten the Future of Electronics

While diamonds may be a girl's best friend, they're also well-loved by scientists working to enhance the performance of electronic devices.

Two new studies performed at the U.S. Department of Energy's Argonne National Laboratory have revealed a new pathway for materials scientists to use previously unexplored properties of nanocrystalline-diamond thin films. While the properties of diamond thin films are relatively well-understood, the new discovery could dramatically improve the performance of certain types of integrated circuits by reducing their "thermal budget."
(Science Daily - read entire article)

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Our company engaged Rob Towner to do the final setup and complete the wash circuit of our pilot plant to begin a feasibility study of an ancient mining district gold concession in Mexico, in order to construct a full scale modern mining operation that will eventually run 4000-5000 tonnes per day or pay ore. Rob is without question one of the most knowledgeable, and talented miners on the planet. His experience and know-how benefited our mining team tremendously and he worked right along side our crew. His work ethics are as high as I have ever seen and he gets the job done. We were right on schedule, never missed completing the days work and finished on budget and on time. Many thanks Rob, you're our favorite Montana Mining Gringo. Best wishes from our mine to yours.
Merv, Mexico
I have had Rob assist me on a number of occasions with my gold mining. When nobody else can fix it or figure it out, Rob jumps in and seems to put it all together so that what is stopped or busted starts working. I would never have got my wash plant at my mine working without his help. He knows how to keep the pay dirt being processed in the plant. I have seen him build stuff and weld stuff to get something fixed that seemed impossible but he gets 'er done just fine. Rob can read the ground like no one I have ever seen, he has thousand of ounces under his belt and my experiences with him show it. He has helped me setup my mine and plant in many different regards. I consider myself lucky I ran into Rob.
Jack, Montana
You and Les are top shelf. Thanks for all your help. I like how you guys operate.
John, Bering Sea
Montana Tech, said you where the Yoda of this gold stuff. My brother and I got a 100 acre gold claim......
Rod, Montana